I’m sure you all have seen the video where a dog is throwing up spaghetti. It’s both amusing and gross at the same time, which is the reason it went viral over the internet. But that spaghetti isn’t the only noodle-like thing your dog is going to vomit, he may actually be giving out roundworms. Roundworms look much like spaghetti and are a common infestation in dogs due to poor hygiene, they look so much like spaghetti that you might be questioning yourself, “Did I feed my dog noodle soup? Why is my dog throwing up spaghetti?”
Once upon inspection, I was surprised to notice white long worms wiggling in the vomit. It more clearly looked as if the dog was throwing up spaghetti when in reality he never had spaghetti.
If your dog had noodle soup and threw it up, that’s nothing indifferent from the viral video where the dog throws up spaghetti. But if he was not fed anything as such, and was closely supervised, what are those wiggly, long noodles doing in there?
When I took the matter forward to my veterinarian, I found out my poor puppy had been holding worms in his gut for a long time. WORMS IN THE STOMACH? Yes, totally live worms living and reproducing inside your dog.
These worms greatly resemble spaghetti in shape and consistency as being long, slippery, and wiggly. You can say the spaghetti strands are 5-8cm long, usually white or light brown in color. At first sight, you can absolutely fool yourself for spaghetti rather than roundworms!
Since puppies have a weak immune system they are more susceptible to getting worm infestation. This is the reason puppies are dewormed every two weeks until they’re 12 weeks of age. After that, the pattern is to be followed every 6 months till the time he turns 3 years old. However, Roundworms are still the most common worms found in dogs.
Let us find out why the dog is throwing up spaghetti and what can be done to solve it.
Why is my dog throwing up spaghetti?
Every time my dog pukes, as a good dog mom, I make sure to analyze (just by looking) if the furry boy has been intaking something hazardous. It wouldn’t be shocking news if I say from small toys to small plastic pieces, I found the least expected items in my dog’s vomit.
At times, dewormers can kill intestinal worms and they are given off as dead worms in the vomit. So if you are already giving the doggo dewormers, don’t really worry, just keep your vet informed about it.
On the other hand, as the worms have invaded the poor puppy’s tummy, they are making him nauseous thus he’s throwing up spaghetti. It may also be due to a bowel obstruction which can cause both vomiting and diarrhea.
The question is, why isn’t the dog excreting worms in his stool? Aren’t the worms supposed to go downwards? Are they crawling upwards? What’s going on inside the dog’s body?
Chances are the dog is excreting through the anal route too but sadly you were unable to notice. When a dog pukes it’s something that rarely happens and grabs your attention. In comparison, who wants to go and have a look at the smelly regular poop, right? Anyway, the question is how does it go upwards to the GI tract when it was supposed to be pushed down?
Dog’s most commonly get roundworms when they get in contact with eggs in other dog’s poop. The eggs grow up in the intestine and then migrate upwards to the lungs. They may be coughed up and swallowed and later given out in the vomit. This happens rarely, but if it does it’s time to rush to a vet!
What are the other routes of getting the parasite?
Dogs may also get worms by eating animals that have worms like mice or rabbits. On the other side, soil contaminated with roundworms can also be a source. A dog mother can pass on the parasite during birth and even through her milk. Moreover, it is known that the dormant larvae in a mother’s intestine can become active during pregnancy that increases the risk of infestation in puppies.
Worms can also be transferred to other human family members, especially kids who do not take precautions with sick dogs. So deworming is pretty essential to keep everyone around the house healthy.
Thus, in a nutshell, your dog is throwing up spaghetti because he has or probably had worm infestation. It’s time to take him to a vet.
What are roundworms? Why do they look like spaghetti?
The name is due to its tubular or round shape. These parasites live inside the gut and benefit from the nutrients that reach there. This is also the reason why most puppies with parasites in their tum are malnourished because worms are feeding on the food puppies eat! Parasites grow, reproduce, and spread to different parts of the body. To think of another being living inside your cute pup sounds scary. No?
It is said that most dogs get roundworms at some time in their life. There are two types of roundworms found in dogs Toxacara caris and Toxascaris leonina. Toxocara Canis is really bad, and contagious. And well this is the roundworm that looks like spaghetti and a dog may throw it up.
Moreover, the other names for roundworms are Ascaris or Toxocara.
Additionally, they’re one of the worms’ types that can be seen by the naked eye, thus easy to spot.
Roundworms are more common in puppies than adult dogs. Most puppies are born with roundworms in their tummies, others catch it from soil or dirty toys. But this does not mean that adult dogs can’t have it. Roundworms are the most common worm infestation in dogs.
Signs and symptoms of having roundworms
Roundworms can be hazardous for the dog’s health. They consume most of the food that you give your dog and he could be going through nutritional deficiency. Moreover, it can also cause pneumonia (lung disease) and intestinal blockage. But the question is, in addition to throwing up spaghetti in dog’s vomit, what other signs can it show?
Some noticeable signs and symptoms include
- Weight Loss
- Change in appetite
- Swollen belly
- Potbelly appearance
- The poor condition of skin and coat
- Poor growth of puppies
- Scooting (dog rubbing his bottom on the ground more than usual)
- Skin irritation
- Visible worms in feces and vomit.
If you notice most of these, it’s time to take the doggo to the vet.
How to treat roundworms? What preventive measures could be taken?
A stool test is done to identify the parasite. A sample of a dog’s vomit may also work. Make sure to use gloves as worms can be contagious. Once you take it to the vet what will he advise? What are the future measures that could be taken?
- Dewormers are very effective in eliminating worms, for example, febendazole, milbemycin, and more.
- Deworm a puppy or dog before adopting or bringing it home.
- Always wash your hands after handling your pet.
- Adult worms should be dewormed once every 3months and puppies every two weeks.
- Supervise your dog, stop him from eating wild animals.
- Children should not be allowed to play where dogs have passed feces.
- Many monthly heartworm preventive medications help with roundworm too.
- If your dog is pregnant, consult your doctor about deworming her. This helps reduce the chance of transferring it to the newborn.
Dewormer can be given orally and through Intravenous injection too. The best part is the tablets now come coated as treats and the dogs really enjoy it. Moreover, other dewormers are given through syringes which can be a little challenging to manage.
It can be safely concluded that a dog throwing up spaghetti in the vomit is a sign of its life inside the dog’s body. Dewormers are very effective in treating worms and bringing your doggo back to its healthy self. Don’t panic if you see spaghetti in a dog’s puke, just take him to the doctor, we’ve got it managed!